I’m all for celebrating with family and friends, giving thanks, relaxing and taking a day to ourselves and not laboring, on said holidays.
I also choose to start my day in an active way as often as I can, even on many holidays. And for a good couple reasons that I’m happy to share. Maybe I can bring a new view to your lives, so I thought I’d share my whys!
I’d like to recall that I began exercising again after nearly a yearlong hiatus between high school and college that I didn’t care to workout nor eat well, and because I hadn’t the faintest idea where to begin. Yes, I began workout out then in large part because I wanted to lose weight, that freshman 15 I thought I was immune to because I was a former high school athlete caught up to me and a photo showed for it!
Big transformations didn’t happen though until i began focusing on more than just the scale. I began exercising for my mind, to offset depressing and anxiety ridden thoughts I’d have time to time. Exercise was my outlet because I felt a high, I felt motivated, I felt like I was doing something good for my body and I was making a difference.
I also learned to focus on and find interest and enjoyment in the process itself. Challenging myself in my workouts, having a plan of what exercises and body parts I would work day to day, and preparing as needed. It became my solace, my ‘me time’.
I might also add that it wasn’t until I really got a grip on my eating that I saw noticeable results in my physique and weight, but that’s another blog entirely.
So, back to the physical activity realm; I choose to workout on Thanksgiving for my own sanity and sake. It’s time for me to regroup before family and friend time. It’s my time to challenge myself and gather my thoughts. Because I know most of the rest of the holiday will be running around, cooking, preparing, cleaning, socializing, then relaxing. All great and fun things, but for an introvert and independent person, some ‘alone time’ is important.
I’d lie if I said I didn’t also do it for somewhat of a calorie burning reason, to offset some of the food I will eat that day. But, I try not to overly focus on this as it just prematurely fatigues me both mentally and physically, and frankly it’s not reasonable.
I know you can’t out exercise a poor diet and it’s very easy to eat back everything you burn off in a single meal, let alone a holiday meal. And I know obsessing over calories and what I eat will not help me; I’ll only end up binging, or having an unhappy deprived holiday meal.
So I commit to being active as often as possible. On holidays, this also means, I don’t have to wake as early or rush through my workout as I would on some other days when I have to go into work or get other tasks done. I can enjoy my time and leave happy and refreshed!
I’d like to add, as somewhat of holiday tradition or habit I established with my parents and family and friends over the years, after meals, holidays included, we would take a leisure walk or activity. This too is enjoyable and refreshing after being indoors (when frigid outside), working all day, or you just want some time to relax at the end of the day rather than just sitting at the end of a large meal (which isn’t ideal for our bodies as they crave movement).
I hope me sharing some of my means helps your see your holidays and a happy light. Maybe it brought a new idea to your head. Or maybe you can relate?
Always feel free to share your thoughts and experiences. I’d love to hear!